Outreach Drives UVa-Wise Admissions

Everyone remembers the day they applied for college, wrote their first resumes and anxiously awaited for acceptance letters back.

Applying and preparing for college was likely a stressful and nail biting experience, but once accepted it was all well worth it.

Like myself, most of you were likely recruited by UVa-Wise or decided to stay close to home and attend the university. UVa-Wise’s admissions and recruitment process, however,  is actually much more intricate and deliberate than it may first seem. Much more is put into the process than simply advertising the college and hoping name recognition will carry the day.

Specific methods are used in the admissions and recruitment process to target prospective students and potential transfers. When recruiting students, the office of admissions engages in a number of programs and drives to reach out to students, including the 1-2-3 GO program which involves conducting hands on workshops in nearly 100 high schools across Virginia.

There are several other methods as well, however. The office of admissions will also aim to contact SAT and PSAT test takers through mail and email as they begin their process in applying for college. Social media is an increasingly powerful instrument as well.

“The office of admissions now employs a paid Facebook campaign as well as active posts using Snapchat and Instagram,” stated Vice Chancellor for Enrollment Management and Student Life Rusty Necessary. “The office also offers students a variety of opportunities to visit campus including individual visits, 360 Campus Preview days, an admitted student day and middle and high school group visits”.

These events are very successful. For fall 2016, these events alone garnered over 1,000 applications for the freshman class. The number of students the office of admissions seeks to enroll changes every year and is somewhat malleable.

“Each year, the office of admissions has a target for new student enrollment,” Necessary stated. “For example, for the fall 2016 semester the target was 480 new students; 340 freshmen and 140 transfer students. On census day, the number of freshmen enrolled was 341 and the number of transfer students totaled 133.”

On average, the college receives roughly 9,000 requests for information, which includes SAT and ACT score submissions, web site traffic, athletic prospects and visitors. The college uses these inquiries to garner potential recruits to the college freshman class.

The admissions and recruitment process is one of the most fundamental processes to the campus community in courting transfer students and new recruits for UVa-Wise, with nearly all students being reached by the process in some way.

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